Piqua football faces Edgewood in D-II, Region 8 semifinal


PIQUA — In a sense, this week is no different than any other for the Piqua football team.

Yes, there may be more at stake — as the 11-0 Indians host the 9-2 Edgewood Cougars in a D-II, Region 8 semifinal at Wayne High School at 7 p.m. Friday.

But, the approach will be the same.

Do, the film study, receive the information and go out on Friday night and put the results on display.

Edgewood comes in with a nine-game winning streak after losing to Milford and Franklin in its first two games.

The Cougars will operate out of the wing-T on offense.

“I think every offense takes extra time to prepare for,” Piqua football coach Bill Nees said. “The wing-t is predicated on a lot of angle blocking. They make a never-ending attempt to out man you on the flanks.”

Senior fullback Tavionne Crosby (5-11, 220) has rushed for 1,114 yards and 21 touchdowns on 155 attempts, while senior halfback Jay Dailey ((6-2, 190) has 1,029 yards and 18 touchdowns on 126 attempts.”

“The fullback will run a lot of traps and inside stuff,” Nees said. “”And the halfback will run a lot of sweeps. And they split up the carries pretty evenly. And they will flash the pass.”

Senior quarterback Eli Jones (6-1, 175) has completed 38 of 80 passes for 928 yards and six touchdowns, with three interceptions.

Sophomore running back Braden Sullivan (6-0, 160) has caught all six touchdown passes and has 21 receptions for 652 yards.

“They only throw it about eight times a game,” Nees said. “But, they are averaging 100 yards a game, so they are averaging about 20 yards a reception.”

The Cougars will operate out of a 3-4 defense.

Linebacker Radical Rothermal (6-1, 260) leads the defense with 86 tackles.

Junior safety Brick Barker (6-0, 170) and sophomore linebacker Wyatt Walker (6-1, 180) both have 82 tackles and junior defensive back Jake Valerio (5-9, 160) has 72 tackles.

Junior defensive back Layne Howell (5-10, 160) has three interceptions.

“They have quite a bit of speed on defense and rely a lot on stunts, loops and blitzes,” Nees said.

Kicker David Rumpler has made 56 of 59 PATs and three of four field goals, with a long of 45 yards.

While Piqua will be Edgewood’s third straight MVL opponent after wins over Sidney and Stebbins, Piqua is coming off its toughest game of the year, a 17-13 win over Withrow.

“If you were down on the field, you could see how big and athletic Withrow was,” Nees said.

The Indians offense has continued to develop as the season has gone on on.

Junior quarterback Brady Ouhl (6-1, 176) has completed 95 of 137 passes for 1,369 yards and 16 touchdowns, with four interceptions.

Senior receiver Cory Miller (6-0, 172) has 27 catches for 331 yards and three touchdowns and junior receiver Dre’Sean Roberts (6-2, 172) has 25 catches for 324 yards and two touchdowns.

Junior receiver Elijah Frazier (6-2, 167) and junior tight end Colton Beougher (6-2, 194) both had caught three TD passes, while junior receiver Ryan Brown (6-0, 167) and senior receiver Giovanni Barron 96-0, 171) have both caught two TD passes.

Senior Jasiah Medley (6-1, 196) is one of the most dangerous running backs in the area.

Medley has rushed for 1,819 yards on 183 carries while rushing for 32 touchdowns.

Ouhl and senior running back Tanner Kemp (6-1, 1840 both average over eight yards per carry.

“We are really happy with the way our offensive line has developed,” Nees said. “We are always trying to get more guys involved in the offense and you have Brady Ouhl as a dual threat quarterback.”

Defensively, the Indians have allowed under 100 points and just one passing TD all year.

Junior linebacker Sam Schmiesing (6-2, 223) is tackling machine with 108 tackles and senior defensive lineman Landon Hare (6-2, 214) and Wyatt Dobbins (6-1, 259) lead the pass rush.

Hare has 61 tackles and 5.5 sacks and Dobbins has 3.5 sacks. Hare has also forced four fumbles and recovered three.

In the secondary, senior defensive back Braiden Strayer (5-10, 169) has six interceptions.

“We have a lot of smart players on defense,” Nees said. “They watch the films and understand what they need to do. And we have a lot of speed on defense too.”

Junior kicker Jackson Trombley(5-11, 180) is another weapon.

In the two playoff games, every kickoff has been a touchback and four of his 16 punts have been down inside the five-yard line.

He is 66-for-68 on PATs and made his first field goal attempt of the year Friday night against Withrow.

“Our punt coverage unit has done a great job,” Nees said. “We are only allowing 2.8 yards on punt returns, so we are flipping the field 43 yards every time we punt.”

And the Indians will try to continue all that and return to the regional finals for the first time since 2006.

No posts to display